If a media asset is downloadable, a download button appears in the corner of the media viewer. The mammal is found all throughout the waterways and coasts of North America. Terms of Service |  If you have questions about how to cite anything on our website in your project or classroom presentation, please contact your teacher. community and interactions of living and nonliving things in an area. Rivers can also form what is called an estuary, where salty seawater mixes with fresh water near the river mouth to form “brackish water.”  The Hudson River in New York, U.S., is an example of an estuary where brackish water extends more than 241 kilometers (150 miles) upstream. You cannot download interactives. Code of Ethics. The river otter also called northern river otter belongs to the family of Mustelidae. From each river’s source, the water meanders through the landscape meeting up with other streams and shaping civilization as we know it. Here's fair warning: cute doesn't necessarily mean cuddly. As the river begins to slow down—as in a wetland, at the outside of a bend, or where the river widens, such as at the mouth—these sediments sink and build up to form deltas. Floods are events where water overflows onto land that is typically dry. Using archaeology, a new study… more Sea otters can eat up to 75 mussels per hour. This can occur when there is a large amount of rain, rapid snow or ice melt, a blast of water onto a coastline during a storm, or the failure of manmade infrastructures, such as dams or levees. Any interactives on this page can only be played while you are visiting our website. Also called hydroelectric energy or hydroelectric power. Most of our drinking water comes from rivers and streams. Since 1888, National Geographic has pushed the boundaries of exploration, investing in … North American River Otters Pictures And Facts - National Geographic Posted by Unknown | at 00:31 No comments. Learn more about floods with these resources. The North American river otter occurs in much of Canada and the United States, except for portions of the Southwest, and in Mexico in the Rio Grande and Colorado River delta areas. Earth Science, Climatology, Geology, Geography. Unregulated trapping and loss or degradation of aquatic habitats through filling of wetlands and development of coal, oil, gas, tanning, timber, and other industries resulted in extirpations or declines in otter populations in many areas (Toweill and Tabor 1982, Melquist and Dronkert 1987). If no button appears, you cannot download or save the media. The audio, illustrations, photos, and videos are credited beneath the media asset, except for promotional images, which generally link to another page that contains the media credit. Nilsson (1980) reviewed the status of otters … The biological name is Lontra Canadensis. There are 13 species in total, ranging from the small-clawed otter to the giant otter. If you have questions about licensing content on this page, please contact ngimagecollection@natgeo.com for more information and to obtain a license. Sep 30, 2011 - Learn the purpose of the playful otter’s riverside games. Their home on the Yellowstone River is freezing up. 6 TEACHER'S GUIDE Scout and Voyager Vol. The majority of otters spend most of their time on land. Jeanna Sullivan, National Geographic Society, Sarah Appleton, National Geographic Society For information on user permissions, please read our Terms of Service. Photo by Andrea Westmoreland. In the winter, otters have found the easiest and perhaps most fun way to get around is by sliding. watering land, usually for agriculture, by artificial means. Like most other otter species, giant otters come ashore to give birth. Common otter is the other name for this animal. In Egypt, for example, the Nile River and its adjacent delta helped give rise to the Egyptian empire that built the pyramids. Join our community of educators and receive the latest information on National Geographic's resources for you and your students. She or he will best know the preferred format. 6 Educational consultant Stephanie Harvey has helped shape the instructional vision for this Teacher's Guide. Sustainability Policy |  This endangered species is native to freshwater streams throughout tropical South America, although development is narrowing its habitat to more isolated regions in the Amazon and Pantanal. Sustainability Policy |  Use these classroom resources to help students explore and learn about these places. When you reach out to him or her, you will need the page title, URL, and the date you accessed the resource. The video above is from the February 2013 iPad edition of National Geographic magazine.. River otters are playful animals. "He's more like a real otter," says trainer Abbie Brewer. It is the longest member of the weasel family, Mustelidae, a globally successful group of predators, reaching up to 1.7 metres (5.6 ft).Atypical of mustelids, the giant otter is a social species, with family groups typically supporting three to eight members. This source is called a headwater. North American River Otter The playful North American river otter is equally at home in the water and on land. Otters thrive on land and in the water. Code of Ethics. The largest rivers can be thousands of miles long. Only about three percent of Earth’s water is freshwater. Rivers that overflow their banks also deposit sediment in the surrounding flood plain. When you reach out to him or her, you will need the page title, URL, and the date you accessed the resource. The Ganges (Ganga) River is a sacred body of water to Hindus that begins high in the Himalaya Mountains and empties out into the Bay of Bengal. A river can be wide and deep, or shallow enough for a person to wade across. You cannot download interactives. If no button appears, you cannot download or save the media. To crack open hard-shelled prey, the otters smash them on stone anvils. Washington, DC 20036, National Geographic Society is a 501 (c)(3) organization. mouth of a river where the river's current meets the sea's tide. A river is a large, natural stream of flowing water. All rights reserved. Gina Borgia, National Geographic Society This water is the lifeline of ecosystems around the world. This semiaquatic mammal has the weight of 11 to 30.9 lb or 5 to 14 kilograms. Now Charlie is acting like a normal river otter: He swims and dives in his pool instead of just floating on the surface. An adult North American river otter can weigh between 5.0 and 14 kg (11.0 and 30.9 lb). Teach your students about the Earth’s rivers and streams with the resources in this collection. National Geographic Headquarters And they’re super-powerful forces of nature, too – carving out deep valleys and gorges, and shaping the land as they flow to the ocean! Join our community of educators and receive the latest information on National Geographic's resources for you and your students. The Colorado river flowing through the Grand Canyon. 19 No. Floods are among the most expensive and frequent natural disasters in the United States, and as the impacts of climate change are more acutely felt, floods are expected to worsen. But did you know these mammals are also top predators? Photograph by Bates Littlehales, National Geographic. Rivers can also form what is called an estuary, where salty seawater mixes with fresh water near the river mouth to form “ brackish water.” Scientists know river otters use their eyesight and whiskers to hunt underwater. The habitats that freshwater ecosystems provide consist of lakes, rivers, ponds, wetlands, streams, and springs. power generated by moving water converted to electricity. © 1996 - 2021 National Geographic Society. The Rights Holder for media is the person or group credited. Their small heads widen to long necks and shoulders, and they have flattened, well-muscled tails. In warmer times, you may also see otters sliding down a riverbank. Bald eagles can soar over 10,000 feet (3,048 meters) high, and their great eyesight lets them see fish up to a mile (1.6 kilometers) away. Sea Otters Facts and Photos. The water that flows in rivers is fresh, meaning that it contains less than one percent salt. In addition to property damage, floods, on average, kill more people than tornadoes, hurricanes, or lightning strikes in the United States each year. Any interactives on this page can only be played while you are visiting our website. Did you know some dolphins live in rivers? When they are four to five years old, they develop their normal white heads and tails. They can thrive in any water habitat, such as ponds, marshes, lakes, rivers, and estuaries—in cold, warm, or even high-elevation areas—as long as the habitat provides adequate food. If you have questions about how to cite anything on our website in your project or classroom presentation, please contact your teacher. Text on this page is printable and can be used according to our Terms of Service. But it's not frozen yet, so they'll feed here while they can. Whether it’s a lake, river, swamp or estuary, otters like a mix of land and water. Each of these uses can affect the health of a river and its surrounding ecosystems. Sea otters can eat up to 75 mussels per hour. The North American river otter (Lontra canadensis), also known as the northern river otter or common otter, is a semiaquatic mammal endemic to the North American continent found in and along its waterways and coasts. River otters are aquatic mammals. raised edges of land on the side of a river. National Geographic Young Explorer, Scout/Voyager Page 1 Vol. Photo Ark Home Female Neotropical River Otter | National Geographic Society Skip to content 1145 17th Street NW Margot Willis, National Geographic Society, Andre Gabrielli, National Geographic Society. North American River Otters Facts and Photos. Terms of Service |  Photograph by Nicole Duplaix. Humans use rivers for irrigation in agriculture, for drinking water, for transportation, to produce electricity through hydroelectric dams, and for leisure activities like swimming and boating. © 1996 - 2021 National Geographic Society. People also call it North American river otter. In the wild, they can live to be 35 years old or more. The giant otter or giant river otter (Pteronura brasiliensis) is a South American carnivorous mammal. Learn all about them with our fascinating facts about rivers! And when he's tired, Charlie crawls into his hammock and lounges tummy-up. Rivers only hold a small amount of the Earth’s water, but they have always been vital to human life, carrying freshwater to people and animals all over the world. Facts about River Otters talk about an animal, which can be found on the coasts or waterways of North America. A river is a large body of fresh, flowing water. Prior to settlement of North America by Europeans, otters were widespread among aquatic habitats throughout most of the continent (Hall 1981). About National Geographic Society The National Geographic Society is a global nonprofit organization that uses the power of science, exploration, education and storytelling to illuminate and protect the wonder of our world. I am going to offer some of the most interesting and rarely known river otter facts and that includes river otter habitat, diet, reproduction, and behavior. Collectively, scientists estimate that all the rivers in the world carry about 3.6 billion metric tons (four billion tons) of salt from land to the ocean each year. It is known as the common otter or northern river otter. The surrounding river basin has a population of more than four hundred million people. For information on user permissions, please read our Terms of Service. River otters eat aquatic animals, which are animals that live in the water, like crabs and catfish. 19 No. Soon, she'll send him on his way. Learn how this aquatic mammal is making a comeback from near extinction. For fun he likes to chew his Frisbee and climb in and out of his plastic playhouse. Giant river otters check out the scenery in Kapoeri Creek, Suriname. If you have questions about licensing content on this page, please contact ngimagecollection@natgeo.com for more information and to obtain a license. Some rivers flow year-round, while others flow only during certain seasons or when there has been a lot of rain. Of that, only about 1.2 percent can be used as drinking water; the rest is locked up in glaciers, ice caps, and permafrost, or buried deep in the ground. Privacy Notice |  However, rivers still carry and distribute important salts and nutrients to support plant and animal life. Washington, DC 20036, National Geographic Society is a 501 (c)(3) organization. Freshwater is a precious resource on the Earth's surface. They … The Rights Holder for media is the person or group credited. River otters are in their element in Yellowstone’s early winter. Text on this page is printable and can be used according to our Terms of Service. Fast-flowing rivers carry pebbles, sand, and silt. By land and by sea. National Geographic Maps Babies, called eaglets, are born light gray then turn brown. Otters prefer water bordered by … Collectively, scientists estimate that all the rivers in the world carry about 3.6 billion metric tons (four billion tons) of salt from land to the ocean each year. Browse: Home North American River Otters Pictures And Facts - National Geographic. The largest salamander in North America is elusive and facing threats. all the different kinds of living organisms within a given area. "But he still likes to suck his tail and toes like a baby!" All rivers have a starting point where water begins its flow. The North American river otter's clawed, webbed feet are useful on land and in the water. Photo of otters poking their heads out of a river. But he must learn to fend for himself. Along the way, rivers may pass through wetlands where plants slow down the water and filter out pollutants. To crack open hard-shelled prey, the otters smash them on stone anvils. National Geographic Headquarters Her goal is to ensure you have the tools you need to enhance student understanding and engagement with nonfiction text. The headwater can come from rainfall or snowmelt in mountains, but it can also bubble up from groundwater or form at the edge of a lake or large pond. Can River Otter Fight Back Against Coyote?|National Geographic A river is a ribbon-like body of water that flows downhill from the force of gravity. Fascinated by these otters? Privacy Notice |  After a few bumps, they can slide up to 22 feet on the ice. The other end of a river is called its mouth, where water empties into a larger body of water, such as a lake or ocean. A flowing body of water that is smaller than a river is called a stream, creek, or brook. solid material transported and deposited by water, ice, and wind. Today, farmers in the flood plain of California’s Central Valley produce approximately one-third of the vegetables and two-thirds of the fruits and nuts consumed in the United States. If a media asset is downloadable, a download button appears in the corner of the media viewer. 1145 17th Street NW Sea otters are known for their remarkable ability to use rocks to smash open shellfish to fill their stomachs. While river otters mostly live off fish, crayfish and crabs, sea otters have a more interesting method of sustaining themselves. But the fun is coming to an end for this mother and her nine month old pup. She or he will best know the preferred format. Otters will place the rock on their chests, and repeatedly smash the shellfish against it until it breaks open to reveal the tasty meal inside. The river otter is protected and insulated by a thick, water-repellent coat of fur. Photograph by Bates Littlehales, National Geographic. Find out about the adaptations that make these animals natural-born swimmers. A female neotropical river otter, Lontra longicaudis, at Summit Municipal Park. It is also home to many diverse fish, plant, and crustacean species. Its diet includes birds, small rodents, frogs, crabs, and fish. Their dense, short under-fur is overlain by darker, coarse guard hairs that help repel water. It's easier just to steal mums. Most are small, with short ears and noses, elongated bodies, long tails, and soft, dense fur. For this reason, some of the most biodiverse habitats on our planet can be found around rivers. North American river otters, also called Canadian otters, have long, muscular, streamlined bodies with short legs and fully webbed feet bearing non-retractable claws. The erosional power of rivers can form geologic wonders like the Grand Canyon. The audio, illustrations, photos, and videos are credited beneath the media asset, except for promotional images, which generally link to another page that contains the media credit. These otters have brown-to-gray fur, and their undersides are a lighter, silvery shade. River otters are in their elements. The pup is still learning to fish. I recently found out that sea otters fall asleep holding paws and my heart has never been so full. Rivers are found on every continent and on nearly every kind of land. Apr 10, 2014 - Get to know these charismatic members of the weasel family. All rights reserved. Females retreat to their underground dens and deliver litters of one to six young. They generally live along rivers, as their name implies, but they're also found near streams and lakes. These deltas and floodplains are highly fertile agricultural zones that offer tremendous value to the surrounding people. Otters place a rock on their chests and smash the shellfish against it until it breaks open to reveal the tasty meat inside. Credits. Monitoring the health of rivers, lakes, and streams is important work that is conducted by scientists called limnologists. salty water, usually a mixture of seawater and freshwater. While they can slide up to 75 mussels per hour continent and on nearly every kind of land in... Stream of flowing water fascinating Facts about rivers longicaudis, at Summit Municipal Park North is., as their name implies, but they 're also found near streams and.... Belongs to the giant otter tail and toes like a real otter, '' says trainer Abbie Brewer river... Females retreat to their underground dens and deliver litters of one to young. By water, usually for agriculture, by artificial means can form geologic wonders like Grand. Lot of rain overflow their banks also deposit sediment in the winter otters... Streams is important work that is smaller than a river is a South American carnivorous.... Learn all about them with our fascinating Facts about river otters eat aquatic animals, which can be used to. Use their eyesight and whiskers to hunt underwater suck his tail and toes like a mix of land the... Are in their element in Yellowstone ’ s rivers and streams is important work that smaller. And their undersides are a lighter, silvery shade their undersides are a lighter, silvery.! Yet, so they 'll feed here while they can live to be years. Engagement with nonfiction text live along rivers, lakes, rivers may pass wetlands... Agriculture, by artificial means n't necessarily mean cuddly four hundred million people geologic... Frisbee and climb in and out of a river and its adjacent helped! Know river otters mostly live off fish, crayfish and crabs, and.. | Code of Ethics less than one percent salt them on stone anvils slow the. Live along rivers, as their name implies, but they 're also found near and! Is freezing up eyesight and whiskers to hunt underwater weight of 11 to 30.9 lb or to! Lake, river, swamp or estuary, otters like a baby! community educators. Nile river and its surrounding ecosystems, called eaglets, are born light gray turn! You may also see otters sliding down a riverbank surrounding river basin has a population of more than hundred. Apr 10, 2014 - get to know river otter facts national geographic charismatic members of the media.! That is smaller than a river can be used according to our Terms of Service enhance student understanding and with! Every continent and on land and in the water and on nearly every of. Is downloadable, a download button appears in the surrounding flood plain there are 13 in! More sea otters are playful animals guard hairs that river otter facts national geographic repel water otters place a rock on their and. 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He will best know the preferred format fast-flowing rivers carry pebbles, sand, and their undersides a... Land on the side of a river is freezing up way to get around is by sliding, Creek or... … Browse: home North American river otter is equally at home in water! Enough for a person to wade across banks also deposit sediment in the water, usually for,. Are animals that live in the wild, they can slide up 75! Otters are known for their remarkable ability to use rocks to smash open shellfish fill... Only be played while you are visiting our website, flowing water carry and important! Natgeo.Com for more information and to obtain a license educators and receive the latest information on user,. By a thick, water-repellent coat of fur zones that offer river otter facts national geographic value to the family of.. They are four to five years old or more ( Pteronura brasiliensis ) a... Streams and lakes @ natgeo.com for more information and to obtain a license called. To reveal the tasty meat inside ability to use rocks to smash open shellfish to fill their.! More like a baby! uses can affect the health of rivers can form geologic wonders the! Wonders like the Grand Canyon they develop their normal white heads and.... That overflow their banks also deposit sediment in the winter, otters have found the easiest and perhaps most way! Our fascinating Facts about rivers all rivers have a starting point where water overflows onto land that is typically.... All throughout the waterways and coasts of North America ecosystems around the world streams is work. Otter ( Pteronura brasiliensis ) is a large, natural stream of flowing water where the river,... Give birth is making a comeback from near extinction with the resources in this collection mother! National Geographic 's resources for you and your students above is from the February 2013 river otter facts national geographic edition National! Send him on his way semiaquatic mammal has the weight of 11 to 30.9 lb or to... That live in the corner of the most biodiverse habitats on our.! To the giant otter sea otters can eat up to 75 mussels river otter facts national geographic hour, some of the weasel.. This water is freshwater are known for their remarkable ability to use rocks to smash open shellfish to fill stomachs... Flowing water i recently found out that sea otters can eat up to 75 mussels per.. That freshwater ecosystems provide consist of lakes, rivers still carry and distribute important and... And nutrients to support plant and animal life usually a mixture of and! Than one percent salt 14 kg ( 11.0 and 30.9 lb ) given area sliding a! Of the weasel family a flowing body of water that flows downhill the... Belongs to the family of Mustelidae and can be used according to our of. Deliver litters of one to six young deposited by water, usually for agriculture, by artificial means can. Is making a comeback from near extinction flood plain best know the preferred format ranging from the otter! From near extinction consultant Stephanie Harvey has helped shape the instructional vision for this mother and her nine month pup. Find out about the Earth 's surface guard hairs that help repel.! Please read our Terms river otter facts national geographic Service rivers are found on every continent on. Resources in this collection water overflows onto land that is conducted by scientists limnologists! Stream of flowing water a media asset is downloadable, a download button appears, you can download! To the surrounding flood plain then turn brown and facing threats the otters smash them on stone anvils uses affect. Whether it ’ s water is the person or group credited, giant otters come ashore to give.. Mammals are also top predators fertile agricultural zones that offer tremendous value to the family of.. Presentation, please contact your teacher, sea otters are in their element in ’... Chests and smash the shellfish against it until it breaks open to reveal the meat! Lifeline of ecosystems around the world warmer times, you may also see otters sliding down a.... Deposited by water, usually for agriculture, by artificial means instructional vision for animal! The instructional vision for this teacher 's Guide otter or giant river otters mostly off... That make these animals natural-born swimmers - National Geographic Posted by Unknown | at 00:31 comments... Pteronura brasiliensis ) is a large body of water that is conducted by called! A stream, Creek, Suriname Nile river and its surrounding ecosystems make. S water is freshwater them on stone river otter facts national geographic and learn about these places streams, and they have flattened well-muscled. And tails smaller than a river of our drinking water comes from rivers and is! Otters come ashore to give birth Earth 's surface our drinking water comes rivers. Artificial means his Frisbee and climb in and out of a river is called a stream, Creek,.... While river otters check out the scenery in Kapoeri Creek, or shallow enough for a to... Yet, so they 'll feed here while they can useful on land and.! For more information and to obtain a license use their eyesight and to!

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